Weekend Indulgence: Oysters & Champagne at Rubi’s
Matt Rubiner, Great Barrington’s celebrated cheesemonger, never planned for his espresso counter to moonlight as an oyster bar. Since last year, he has been special-ordering fish from a premiere wholesaler for his customers to pick up on Fridays, and many of them have been getting oysters. One day, one of the regulars came for his shipment at Rubiner’s shop on Main Street and walked around the back to his Rubi’s Cafe. “He sat down, shucked them and knocked them all back,” says Rubiner, who applauded the gentleman’s style and decided that he should serve oysters—and champagne or wine—every Friday and Saturday from 4 - 6 PM. It was an immediate, word-of-mouth hit. “We sold out all our oysters the first Friday so we had nothing to serve on Saturday,” says Rubiner, who gets a lot of customers on their way to and from the movies. “On Valentine’s Day, people came in and ordered dozens!” (If you want to order oysters to take home. Rubiner and his crew will give you a lesson in shucking.) He offers only a few varieties each week and tries to make sure each has a distinctive character. Recently, he’s had Winter Points and Beausoleils and Summersides from Nova Scotia. He sells them all at $2 a piece with a mignoette sauce on the side. “It couldn’t be simpler,” he says.
Rubiner’s Cheesemongers & Grocers
264 Main Street, Great Barrington; 413.528.0488
Store Hours: Monday - Saturday 10 - 6; Sunday 10 - 4.
Café Hours: Monday - Friday 7 - 4; Saturday 8 - 6 and Sunday 8 - 4.